Two boyhood friends, Rocky Sullivan and Jerry Connolly have taken different paths in life. After Rocky is arrested he is sent to a juvenile facility and becomes a lifelong tough guy and criminal. Jerry on the other hand goes straight and becomes a Catholic priest ministering to people in the same neighborhood when he and Rocky grew up. When Rocky is released from prison he resumes his criminal lifestyle and becomes much admired by many of the local kids. Worried that the kids will follow Rocky into the criminal world, Jerry works hard to keep them on the straight and narrow. When Rocky is convicted and sentenced to the electric chair, Jerry asks him for one last favor. Written by
A Big Time Cast in a Big City Drama Destined to be the Biggest Hit in Years!
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Did You Know?
's story was revised a number times by John Wexley
and Warren Duff
. They provided "powerful treatments", but as with many of the "catch-as-catch-can" pictures of the time, the screenplay was "insubstantial". James Cagney
later recalled: "the actors had to patch up [the script] here and there by improvising right on the set". See more
Towards the end of the film, during the scene where Rocky is shooting it out with the police in the warehouse, watch the "concrete" pillar Rocky has taken cover behind. Seconds before a bullet impact appears on the pillar, a close up reveals a slight round indentation surrounded by a lighter coloring of paint, exactly where the bullet squib, which has been embedded in the pillar, explodes moments later. An immediate cut to Rocky's reaction has him bumping the pillar with his hands, at which point the entire "concrete" pillar wobbles slightly. See more
Jerry, As a Boy
William 'Rocky' Sullivan, as a boy
It's as dead as a door nail around here.
Jerry, As a Boy
The Sidewalks of New York
Music by Charles Lawlor
Played by the organ grinder during the opening panorama See more